Brandon Smith to join Payne Haas.

Payne Haas and Brandon Smith are the only NRL players to achieve the rare honour of being selected in the Dally M Team of the Year and The Frownlow Medal Team of the Year in 2021.

Haas was judged to be one of the best props in the game, while Smith was voted the best hooker this year at the Dally M awards night. Both players were also nominated for The Frownlow Medal for separate incidents.

The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is the most recent recipient.

Smith, known among league fans as the Block of Cheese, was nominated after a leaked video showed him in possession of cocaine at a house party just days after losing the preliminary final to Penrith and being named the game’s best hooker.

Haas, meanwhile, earned his Frownlow nomination way back in January. He was arrested on charges of intimidation and verbal abuse, and reports allege that he was intoxicated at the time. The incident occurred near the NSW/Queensland border.

It was not his first run in with police. In 2019 he appeared in court over two drink-driving incidents, and in the same year he was suspended and fined by the Broncos for refusing to cooperate with the NRL integrity unit in relation to two off-field incidents.

Haas and Smith will reunite later this year at a second awards night, and the ceremony for The Frownlow Medal and The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame offers as much cocaine, drinking and anti-social behaviour as they can handle.

Image: Getty Images

Bigger than the Dally M: The Frownlow Medal NRL team of 2021.

The greatest honour for any NRL player is not wining the Dally M medal, it’s being named in The Frownlow Medal team of the year. So prestigious is it that in 2021, three full NRL teams have been formed with players who have been nominated for Frownlow honours in this calendar year.

The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is the most recent recipient.

The Frownlow Medal Team of 2021 includes superstars such as rapist Jarryd Hayne, as well as some of the games hottest prospects in Kotoni Staggs, Jai Arrow and Victor Radley. Prop Payne Haas and hooker Brandon Smith are the only players to make the Frownlow team and the Dally M team of the year in 2021.

The Frownlow Medal Team of 2021.

Fullback – Jarryd Hayne

Wing – David Nofoaluma

Centre – Kotoni Staggs

Centre – Stephen Crichton

Wing – Will Smith

Five-Eighth – Cameron Munster

Halfback – Lachlan Lewis

Lock – Jack de Belin

Second row – Corey Harawira-Naera

Second row – Jai Arrow

Prop – Payne Haas

Hooker – Brandon Smith

Prop – George Burgess

Interchange – Josh McGuire, Zane Musgrove, Blake Lawrie, Matt Dufty

TEAM 1 will play in a Tri-Series against teams 2 and 3, also made up of NRL Frownlow nominees from 2021.

TEAM 2

Fullback – Reece Walsh

Wing – Gerard Beale

Centre – Zac Lomax

Centre – Curtis Scott

Wing – Aaron Schoup

Five-Eighth – Corey Norman

Halfback – Brandon Wakeham

Lock – Victor Radley

Second row – Jamil Hopoate

Second row – Adam Elliott

Prop – Paul Vaughan

Hooker – Api Koroisau

Prop – Josh Kerr

Interchange – Sione Katoa, Kaide Ellis, Chris Lewis, Dylan Napa

TEAM 3

Fullback – James Tedesco

Wing – Tesi Niu

Centre – James Roberts

Centre – Jack Bird

Wing – Tristan Sailor

Five-Eighth – Anthony Milford

Halfback – Phoenix Crossland

Lock – Toby Rudolf

Second row – Corey Waddell

Second row – Tyrell Fuimaono

Prop – Tui Kamikamica

Hooker – Manase Fainu

Prop – Kane Evans

Interchange – Daniel Alvaro, Corey Horsburgh, T C Robati, Tyrone May, Josh Dugan

The Tri-Series will be played over the Christmas holidays in front of packed stadiums, without masks or social distancing, in whichever city is in the middle of a strict COVID-19 lockdown.

Image: NuNa

Payne Haas confesses to intimidation.

NRL player Payne Haas has admitted to intimidation but denies charges of intimidating police officers. The young superstar claims he was attempting to intimidate Queenslanders when he was arrested and that he would never mistreat police because “…they wear blue.”

Haas explained that he was hurling abuse at Queenslanders ahead of the 2021 footy season when he was arrested in Tweed Heads recently, because he is still angry at losing the 2020 State of Origin series.

The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is the most recent recipient.

“I wanna win Origin this year,” stated Haas.

“I can’t believe we lost to their reserve grade team last year, and I’m not gonna go through that again this year – so I went as close to Queensland as possible and started just yelling stuff at random Queenslanders from across the border.”

“I just love intimidating Queenslanders, but I couldn’t get into the state because of the whole coronavirus restrictions, so I just had to yell at them from the other side of the river. If we wanna win Origin this year, we’ve gotta get in early, especially if they get all their top players back this year.”

Police arrested Haas on charges of intimidation and verbal abuse, and reports allege that he was intoxicated at the time.

“I still don’t know why I was arrested. I reckon the cops must secretly be Queenslanders.”

The talented prop was lost for words, however, when he was reminded that he plays his club football for Queensland’s most popular team.

It’s not the forward’s first run in with police. In 2019 he appeared in court over two drink-driving incidents, and in the same year he was suspended and fined by the Broncos for refusing to cooperate with the NRL integrity unit in relation to two off-field incidents.

Whether or not the young New South Welshman’s efforts prove effective will be known later in the year.

Image: NuNa